Friday, December 12, 2008

COMMENTARY >> Back to Basics

By Chief Master Sgt. Anthony Brinkley
19th Airlift Wing command chief

Recently about 30 people from Team Little Rock accompanied General Schatz to Lackland Air Force Base as he presided over the graduation ceremony for over 600 trainees. This proved to be a tremendous event in the lives of the graduates as well as those of us from Little Rock Air Force Base. Our experience caused a bit of reflection that Iíd like each of you to ponder.
First, do you recall the feeling of pride and satisfaction you had when you completed your entry program into the USAF. Do you still demonstrate and share the enthusiasm for being the best professional Airman that you can with those around you? Are you maintaining the standards that are required daily to be a key contributor to our Air Force family? If not, then Iíd ask you to ponder why this is the case.
Each year our USAF churns out over 33,000 new trainees to continue our proud heritage and legacy of valor. I am convinced that everything we need to be successful in the Air Force we learned in basic training. Things like military bearing, attention to detail, customs and courtesy, sustained physical fitness, safety as well as checklist discipline help develop the professional Airman.
When these new Airmen hit your work center, are you setting them up for success by maintaining these standards or do you tell them that this is the real Air Force and we donít do those things anymore? I submit to you that our new Airmen represent a time honored tradition of what the real Air Force looks like. Our job is to ensure that they donít lose the fire that was in their bellies when they marched from civilian status to professional Airman.
Each of us plays a role in leading, developing and preparing our next generation of Airmen to assume their role in the worldís greatest Air Force. The last thing each trainee does before they start their day is to look in the mirror when they leave their barracks. Team Little Rock, we all have mirrors and itís time to get back to basics daily.
Combat Airlift!

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